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Circleville Named “Tree City USA” by Arbor Day Foundation


CIRCLEVILLE, OH – May 9, 2024 – Circleville has been honored with the prestigious “Tree City USA” designation by the Arbor Day Foundation, thanks to the dedicated efforts of the Circleville Tree Commission. In addition to this accolade, the city recently won a significant federal grant aimed at expanding its green initiatives.

The Urban and Community Forestry Grant from the US Department of Agriculture Forestry Service, funded by the Inflation Reduction Act, will provide Circleville with one million dollars over five years. This historic investment is part of a nationwide effort to boost tree cover in urban, suburban, and rural communities.

The Tree Commission applied for the grant this past spring under the title “The Green Circleville Initiative.” This project aims to hire a city arborist, complete a comprehensive tree inventory, plant new trees, and replace the downtown Main Street trees. The Tree Commission is eager to utilize these funds to enhance the city’s green spaces.

Tree City USA Designation

Circleville’s designation as a “Tree City USA” is a testament to the city’s commitment to urban forestry. The Tree Commission has implemented a comprehensive plan for the care, preservation, pruning, planting, replacement, maintenance, and removal of trees and shrubs in public spaces. Over the past few years, the Commission has planted more than 140 trees, significantly enhancing the city’s urban environment.

The Tree Commission meets on the second Thursday of each month at 6:00 PM in the City Council Chambers. The public and new volunteers are encouraged to attend and contribute to the ongoing efforts.

In the accompanying photo, members and volunteers of the Circleville Tree Commission are pictured from left to right: Doug Baker, Alan Gribler, Mark Fouch, Beth Kowalski, Sheri Theis, and Paul Hang.

The Tree City USA Growth Award from the Arbor Day Foundation further recognizes communities that achieve higher levels of tree care. It highlights innovative programs, increased commitment to urban forestry, and successful projects that can be shared nationwide. To qualify for this award, communities must spend more dollars per capita than the previous year and earn points in categories such as Education and Public Relations, Partnership, Planning and Management, and Tree Planting and Maintenance.

Tree Line USA Program

The Tree Line USA® program, another initiative by the Arbor Day Foundation in collaboration with the National Association of State Foresters, sets standards for integrating trees with utility services. It recognizes best practices in public and private utility arboriculture, promoting the coexistence of trees and utilities for community benefit.

Tree Line USA Standards

  • Quality Tree Care: Adherence to industry standards for pruning, planting, removals, trenching, and tunneling near trees.
  • Annual Worker Training: Regular training for utility employees and contract workers in best practices.
  • Tree Planting and Public Education: Programs available to the public demonstrating proper tree planting, placement, and pruning, expanding the community tree canopy.
  • Tree-Based Energy Conservation Program: Implementation of a formal program valuing trees for energy conservation.
  • Arbor Day Celebration: Sponsorship or participation in annual Arbor Day events, collaborating with community groups.

The Tree Line USA program is supported by the National Association of State Foresters, the Utility Arborist Association, and the Society of Municipal Arborists.

Circleville’s recognition as a Tree City USA and the receipt of the federal grant underscore the city’s ongoing commitment to enhancing urban forestry and the quality of life for its residents.